Declining Global Tractor Sales Reported for First 9 Months

Global tractor sales for the first 9 months of 2016 have declined in most major countries, though positive trends have been seen in emerging markets such as Vietnam and Kenya.


The tractors market will close 2016 with a decline in almost all major countries. The data prepared by Agrievolution - circulated in Bologna during the FederUnacoma press conference that anticipates the opening of EIMA International - indicates during the first 9 months of the year a decline in sales in Europe (-6%), in China (-29%), Brazil (-17%), Russia (-19%) and Japan (-24%). Few countries maintain positive indices; among them, India (+17%, which offsets the substantial decline of 2015), and Turkey (+7%). Slight increase in the US (+3%), although tractors with power exceeding 100 hp recorded a slump in sales (-22%). At year end, India is expected to reach 600,000 tractors, China 400,000, the United States 200,000, and Europe 160,000. The drop in sales is due to the reduction in farm incomes caused by excess production of  key commodities and the subsequent collapse of their prices on the market, which leaves farmers with a smaller margin for investments. The economic crisis began in 2014 and is expected to continue in the 2016-2017 farming year, with an estimated excess of production, with a 1.5% increase in the harvest of cereals (mainly for the production performance in the United States, Australia, Canada, China, and Kazakhstan) and increases of 1.3% for rice, 4% for oilseeds, 1.1% for milk.

The negative phase for agricultural equipment purchases is likely to continue also in 2017, and a recovery is only expected from 2018. The setback involves many of the major countries, but does not affect the positive trends seen in some emerging markets that represent - after the emergence of India, China, Brazil, and Turkey - the new frontier of agricultural mechanization. A survey sponsored by FederUancoma and carried out by Nomisma on the trend of tractor import highlights how, regardless of the economic situation of agriculture globally, the demand for mechanization proceeds apace in some new markets.

In the six years from 2010 to 2015 - as shown at the conference by the Chairman of FederUnacoma Massimo Goldoni - the imports of tractors grew 400% in Vietnam (for a value of $ 124 million), 250% in Ethiopia, and 240% in Kenya. The most striking case is Cuba, which in 2015 alone saw an increase of imports by more than 800%. As for other agricultural machinery and equipment, the Philippines and Cambodia are the countries with the highest growth rates of imports (respectively +190% and +210% in 6 years), followed by Vietnam and Ethiopia (+128% , and +117%).

What we see is a new geography of the markets - said Goldoni - where the protagonists are no longer just the leading countries, but many new realities, a scenario that is also reflected in the EIMA exhibition, which has never before hosted operators from all over the world and includes "business-to-business" sessions dedicated to the Far East, Africa, and the new agricultures that develop in different areas of the world.